BizMiner Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
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For additional BizMiner report series FAQs, please use the links below:
Q: Does BizMiner offer archive-year reports for all industries in the Industry Financial Reports?
A: BizMiner offers up to 13-year reports when available. When they are available, the user will see an option to “Add legacy year data…” This option will be located below the drop down for the revenue range. It’s also important to note that the legacy data will display in a separate report file on the user’s report storage page.
Q: What data sources does BizMiner use?
A: Raw data analyzed for BizMiner reports is sourced from an array of the nation's government and private statistical sources. None of these raw data sources creates the final measures reflected in BizMiner industry profiles. In total, BizMiner accesses over a billion sourced data points from eighteen million business operations for each of its twice annual updates covering a 3-5 year time series. Historical data and BizMiner algorithms are used to inform and test projections for non-reporting firms. Data elements are sourced specifically from:
- IRS SOI Corporation Income Tax Returns
- IRS SOI Corporation Tax Book
- IRS SOI 1040 Schedule C Income Tax Returns
- IRS SOI Statistics of Income- Individual Tax Statistics
- US Economic Census of Manufactures
- US Census Economy Overview
- US Census Annual Survey of Manufactures
- US Census Annual Retail Trade Survey
- US Census Annual Wholesale Trade Survey
- US Census Quarterly Financial Reports
- US Census County Business Patterns
- Bureau of Labor Statistics Monthly Employment Reports
- Bureau of Labor Statistics Monthly Unemployment Reports
- US Census Wholesale Trade Report
- US Census Quarterly (New Housing) Sales by Price and Financing
- US Census Total Construction Spending
- US Census Retail Trade Report
- US Census Quarterly Services Survey
- Commercial Real Estate Survey
- Credit Reporting Agencies
- Business Directories
While 100% firm coverage is desirable for analysis purposes, the greatest value of BizMiner reports rests in discerning patterns of activity, which are reflected in the large samples used to develop our reports. The overall current coverage of the databases surpasses 13 million active business operations at any point in time.
Q: Is there a list of definitions for all of the terms used in the BizMiner products?
A: Yes, there is. Here is a link to the glossary of terms BizMiner uses.
Q: How often is BizMiner data updated? When do the updates typically occur?
A: BizMiner updates content twice a year, usually in June and December. Each release updates our content by six months. The Industry Market series and Competitive Analyzer series include monthly updates of key industry trends metrics specific to the selected market area.
For example, the June 2016 release includes real-time data through year. (The monthly IMR and CMA update tables lags by only 2-3 months at all times.) This is due to the time required to wait for the completion of financial statements and other reporting, then to access, filter, clean, analyze, format and publish raw data from more than 13 million US operationsand a variety of other sources. By contrast, most BizMiner competitors had not yet released data beyond year end 2014 by the time BizMiner had published data through year-end 2015.
In general, the more granular the data that is presented (by metric, industry and area), the longer the process takes. This is why the government, for example, can publish timely employment data for economic sectors in states each month, and more slowly for metro areas, while more granular industry break-outs of government data usually involve a multi-year time lag. BizMiner publishes data that is more timely than other analysts, with significantly more granular industry and local market selection options.
Q: How are the reports delivered and what format are they in?
A: Most of our reports are available in HTML, PDF, and CSV formats. Immediately after purchasing an online report, you are taken to your secure account page that’s automatically created on our site. Your account page displays icons for download options.
Use the HTML option to quickly view and print the report. The PDF option allows you to save the formatted report on your hard drive. (The PDF version takes about a minute to load.) The CSV option exports the raw data into a spreadsheet format such as excel.
Our Industry Financial, BizBenchmarker, Micro-Firm Profit & Loss and Competitive Market Analyzer series also include free custom benchmarking features. From your account page, you can click on the “Inputs” link to display a blank template that allows to you to input individual company information.
Balance sheet, income statement and ratios (including charts) will be auto-calculated and displayed side-by-side against your industry peer group when you regenerate the report in any of the three formats.
Q: How are the industry financial statements and balance sheets put together in BizMiner? Specifically, how are the changes in the number of companies reporting data each year accounted for? When presenting a five year industry data does each year include all of the same companies? If not, what is the method used for compiling the composite provided data?
A: The industry-wide data generally includes the same companies each year – plus some new entries, and minus any failures or merged companies.
The more limited sales class reports have a lot of year-to-year overlap, but it is not 100% and by definition can’t be, since companies can grow out of any specific sales class. For example, if a company’s sales were $3m one year (putting it in the $2.5m - $5m sales class) what happens if its earnings grow to $12 four years later? Then it’s in the $10-24m sales class. So, in those sales class reports, there is greater migration between sales groups, and lower continuity of firms within a specific sales group. However, it is certainly reasonable to say that the companies are “similar."
Q: After reviewing some of the financial ratios in the Industry Financial Reports, I was wondering if the ratios that include balance sheet items are for the year-end, or an average for that year.
A: All of the data is year-end, except where otherwise noted (such as a column heading of 2011q2). The time series for monthly updates to the Industry Market and Competitive Analyzer series are noted at the top of those tables.
Q: I’ve reviewed the BizMiner reports and compared them with other providers’ reports and see that compound growth statistics and business counts by revenue class are missing. Can you please comment?
A: The industry-wide measures in competitive reports do not truly indicate industry-wide measures. They represent corporations only—which are about half of all companies in most industries. As a result, the growth statistics in competitive reports do not equal industry growth patterns, and business counts by revenue class are business counts of industry corporations only, not industry-wide statistics.
Also, there is no such thing as “compound growth statistics” in any revenue class subset. If you have a sales class of $1-2.5m with an average of $1m sales in the first year of a time series and $2m in the last year of the time series, does that mean that average sales of the companies has doubled? Maybe….or maybe it means that companies that reported $4m in the first year actually dropped to $2m in the last year; or that companies that reported $500k in the first year reported $2.5 in the last year. The very nature of a sales class is that it is transitory: companies are in it one year but not necessarily in the next, so the idea of “growth” within a sales class is inconsequential.
Lastly, the financial reports display the number of firms whose data is applied to the specific report (industry-wide or sales class) selected. It’s on page one near the top.
Q: I have a question about “officers compensation” within Bizminer. What is the source of data and the scope that was used (i.e., how many executives are included, how deep into the organizational structure do the executives go, the roles of the executives, etc.) Also, what components of “executive compensation” are included: base salary, bonus, other short or long term incentive payments, etc.
A: BizMiner uses the working definition provided by the IRS in their line item definition circular:
Compensation of Officers
Salaries, wages, stock bonuses, bonds, and other forms of compensation were included in this deduction item if they were identified as having been paid to officers for personal services rendered. It did not include qualified deferred compensation, such as contributions to a 401(k) plan or a salary reduction agreement, which were included in the statistics for pensions and profit sharing plans. The item included amounts reported as a part of cost of goods sold or capitalized under section 263A.
Here is a link to the glossary of terms BizMiner uses.